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The History of Freehold Throughout BFA - Azerite Powder Shot Cheese, Turtle Skip
07/09/2020 à 22:45
For all of Battle for Azeroth, Freehold has been one of the most popular dungeons, and with it came a whole host of strategy changes. In this article, we'll cover the hilarious cheese, the big brain clever use of game mechanics, and pivotal strategy changes throughout the history of Freehold starting in Season 1 and moving onwards into Season 4.
Cap'taine céleste Kragg
has had arguably some of the most polarizing changes throughout the whole expansion, and this is due to his signature ability
Tir de poudre d’azérite
. He also just happens to be the first boss in this instance.
Season 1 - Outside the Arena
In early season 1 Azerite Powder Shot would not one shot you and there was also a very generous reset distance on Kragg himself. Most of the time, this meant that the strategy for Kragg was with the boss outside of the arena. This prevented the
Bombardement en piqué
from Sharkbait from hitting a majority of the players as they were not inside of the playable area where the Dive Bomb occurred. The downside of this strategy was that the
was hard to manage, thus you forced a ranged player (read as healer) into the middle of the room in order to bait the bombardment, where they also had to dodge the Dive Bomb. You can get a decent impression of what this looked like from the clip below.
Season 2 - The Intervene Macro
Starting in Season 2,
Tir de poudre d’azérite
would one-shot players who did not have substantial mitigation available. This coupled with the fact that it is a .5 second cast makes it virtually impossible to reactively use defensives on this ability. This in conjunction with Kragg’s playable area representative of his reset spot made this fight rough for a while for melee. The one saving grace that allowed your melee to not have to run out to range was
. With a target of target
macro, your melee would use a defensive for one then the macro would be spammed for the next one. This would make it to where if any of the melee were targeted by the boss (by Azerite Powder Shot) the Warrior would instantly intervene them granting them
and giving them enough of a defensive to be able to live the shot every single time.
Season 3 - Line of Sight
Moving onwards into Season 3 the Intervene macro is dead in favor of a better tactic. That tactic involved line of sighting the Azerite Powder Shot before it was casted, making it to where Kragg will not cast it on you. You may be wondering how you can line of sight Kragg, but there are these planks of wood off to the side that if tanked next to you can dip out of line of sight quickly then dip back in line of sight allowing you to continue to hit the boss. Your ranged and healer were playing “protect the melee” making sure to bait the vile bombardments from Sharkbait far from you guys in order to protect your salvation, the wooden planks.
Season 4 - Player Model Size
In Season 4, it was discovered that if you use a toy that makes you significantly smaller like
Livre des Affranchis
Tapecul de Sombrelune
, you are able to maintain full melee uptime on Kragg while he is tanked near the planks themselves. Instead of forcing the boss to recast like in the season 3 strategy, the boss will shoot at the planks themselves but the shot will hit the planks forcing it to stop. This is by far the most efficient that Kragg will ever be for melee as it makes them safe with 100% certainty and allows them to have 100% uptime on the boss.
Ravageur des Lamineurs
’s signature ability
does bonkers levels of damage. Painful Motivation in the olden days did not have a target cap, allowing for insane strategies such as this one (
). This was further expended on in the later weeks where mages would spam
on the Ravager to outheal the damage that it would take from the Painful Motivation. This allowed the Ravagers to be pulled around the instance and kill high priority mobs such as
Ludwig Von Tortollan
, or basically infinite mobs. This was quickly hotfixed into what it is today, where Painful Motivation will only hit 2 targets in addition to the Ravager itself and can no longer kill bosses (it can still kill Ludwig though).
The Turtle Skip
A huge time save that was in the game for a while in season one was something that we call “The Turtle Skip.” It involved killing Ludwig in a M0 instance before starting the key and by doing this,
was immediately active and you could engage him in combat, effectively skipping Ludwig. This was an enormous time save as Ludwig has a substantial amount of HP and in season one tanks could not really sustain Ludwig + trash (
Harlan Sweet at the beginning of the expansion had very rigid movement as players didn't understand the strategy. You had to mitigate this by forcing them to do “the triangle method.” This meant that you went to points A then B then C then back to A in order to not kill yourself with the
Barrage de boulets de canon
In late Season 2 it was discovered that the
Barrage de boulets de canon
does friendly fire damage to enemy targets and began to be widely used during the Season 2 MDI.
The implementation of this strategy on live realms was shaky at best and most groups decided it was not worth messing around with as the 36 minute timer in Freehold gave for significant mistakes.
In Season 3 teams started to ramp up Cannonball Barraging the middle pack in order to get a substantial amount of count as the timer was cut down by 3 minutes from 36 to 33. Groups got very efficient with their movement, and as you can see from this clip teams would perfectly align the barrages in order to kill 95% of the pack in one Cannonball Barrage.
Whenever you are an old man like myself, sometimes it is nice to reminisce on the past experiences in dungeons and think about how the strategies changed. At the end of the day one thing is certain though, we all sucked at M+ in season one.
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